Angry residents living in the vicinity of five wind turbines are pleading with their local authority to find a solution to the noise emanating from them, which they claim is affecting their quality of life.
Residents on Hole-in-the-Wall Road, Donaghmede, say they have had their sleep disturbed due to the “whirring” sound of the turbines, which are located in nearby Father Collins Park.
They are now pleading with Dublin City Council to address the problem.
Father Collins Park opened in the summer of 2009 following a major redevelopment that cost approximately e20 million.
One of its main features is the turbines that harness the wind and provide the energy that powers the park’s lighting and water features.
The turbines were shut down for a considerable period last year after some maintenance problems and have only been operating as normal in the last couple of months.
Margaret Earlwood, who has been living on Hole-in-the-Wall Road for the last 16 years, said the park is a brilliant amenity.
“However, the noise from the wind turbines are affecting our quality of life,” she stated.
“The problem is particularly bad at night and my husband and I have difficulty sleeping. It’s like having a washing machine on in your bedroom.
“I’m living so close to them that I can hear the constant droning and have to close my windows.”
Ms Earlwood pointed out that she wouldn’t complain for the sake of it and said she had no objection to wind turbines in general.
“If they are creating electricity and they are good for the economy, I’ve no problem with that,” she said.
“It’s purely a location issue. I just think they should be out at sea and that they shouldn’t be in a residential area.
“For eight or nine months they were switched off and it was great. Then when they went back on the noise problems started up again.”
Ms Earlwood said the ideal situation would be to have the turbines removed completely.
“When they get faster the noise gets worse,” she added. “If they’re going 24-7 you get no break from it.
“When they first came along we tried to put up with them. It’s not pleasant and we are trying to find ways to get around the problem.”
Eddie Cummins, who runs Eddie’s Smokeless Fuels along with his son, Alan, said his family was also affected by the noise.
“You can’t open your windows,” stated Mr Cummins, whose business is located on Hole-in-the-Wall Road.
“Alan lives at number one (Hole-in-the Wall Road) and I live at number three and we are right facing the turbines.
“We can’t sleep with the noise. You can also hear them in the workplace during the day.”
Mr Cummins has called for the turbines to be moved or some other solution to be found.
“You like to open your windows to let a bit of air in, especially in the summer months,” he added. “It’s a bit annoying.”
Dublin North East TD Sean Kenny (Lab) has called on the city council to switch off the turbines at night to allow nearby residents sleep.
“I have been contacted by sleepless residents at houses at Hole-in-the-Wall Road, and nearby Grattan Lodge apartments, who are appealing for an end to the nightly noise generated by the turbines,” said Deputy Kenny.
“An apartment resident told me recently that they were totally stressed due to the noise.
“It is becoming clear that wind turbines are problematic in highly built up areas and the planning regulations and guidelines need to be reviewed.
“I am calling on the Environment Minister and the Dublin City Manager to take immediate action to ensure that residents in the North Fringe area can go to work and about their daily business with the benefit of a good night’s sleep.”
A spokeswoman for Dublin City Council confirmed that they had just received a complaint about noise levels from the Father Collins Park wind turbines. She said a decision was pending on the most appropriate environmental assessment of the site.
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